Victorian Jewelry – The Best of Vintage Jewelry

Victorian jewelry is well-known for its academic value and also for the inimitable touch that it offers to antique charm. Even today casual buyers associate the majority of old jewelry pieces to the Victorian era owing to its unique characteristics. In fact it influenced the fashion of the masses, as the predominant design themes found in the Victorian jewelry were borrowed from native origins such as trees, flowers and birds. The early Victorian jewelry included delicate designs, lights and elaborate engravings.

Ultimately, the Victorian jewelry that became notable evolved as heavier and with more conservative designs, especially the two popular designs originated during the Victorian period, were known as Repousse and Cannatille. Repousse was identifiable owing to its solid forms that had fluted and raised edges giving the pieces of jewelry a characteristic of massive quality, while the Cannatille jewelry employed gold wire strands to wound and twist into elaborate designs.

The romantic period initiated with the ascension of Queen Victoria to the throne and her marriage to Prince Albert became an impetus. The techniques of the Victorian jewelry were characterized by using techniques such as piercing, filigree, and so on. Thin plates and gold sheets were used, besides other gemstones included pink topaz, blue zircon, citrine, ruby, amethyst, garnet, sapphire, aquamarine, emerald and peridot. The Victorian jewelry also included popular natural materials such as lava, bog oak, tortoise shell, vulcanite jet and ivory. The late Victorian era got influenced by the Italian, Greece and Egyptian archeological expeditions that brought light to the west in the form of an array of ancient jewelry. Once again designers capitalized the public imagination and some of them such as Giulano and Castellani were noteworthy as they were much sought after.

The common Victorian jewelry motifs had sentimental lockets enclosing a hair lock of the loved one and quite often serpents were seen as the eternity symbol. Other sentimental themes included love birds, clasped hands, love knots, hair jewelry, miniatures and mizpah. Jewels displaying such sentimental motifs had concealed messages for instance, a crescent moon meant honeymoon and made an appropriate gift to a new bride from her husband on their wedding night. Victorian people were captivated with flowers and attached symbolic meaning to each flower such as Lily of the valley denoted sweetness, Pansies represented thought, Yellow Poppy for success and wealth, Violets represented modesty, and so on. The early Victorians enjoyed inner meanings in the jewelry and after the death of Prince Albert, the jewelry became more austere such as heavy, dark stones as they were set in black enamel.

People coming on sports travel also showed interest in Victorian jewelry that depicted sporting themes as men and women pursued the sporting subjects. Slowly, intaglio crystals were reverse painted and exhibited hunting themes such as foxes, pheasant, rabbits, horses and dogs into the forms of jewelry. This collection also included buttons, brooches, stickpins, cuff links, pendants and watch fobs. Even today, the Victorian jewelry has its recognition and rules the hearts of many.

Selling Gold Jewelry? Read This First!

You can almost say it’s another gold rush! What with gold trading at near record high prices, people are digging for gold in their homes looking to cash in on their unwanted gold jewelry and coins.

But don’t rush just yet – there are some things you should know about selling gold for cash so that you don’t get ripped off by unscrupulous buyers.

Selling Gold Jewelry – Do I Scrap it?

Most of us have all sorts of jewelry lying around – old gold jewelry, new gold jewelry and gold jewelry that’s, well, to be quite frank about it, junk gold jewelry. It could be a class ring you wore the summer you graduated high school and never again; a bracelet you got as a gift on your 13th birthday that is too sweet and girlie for your grown-up tastes; a gold chain your college beau bought you once upon a time and which has since – like your relationship – broken apart; a gold watch of grandpa’s that stopped working long ago and no one in your family wanted to wear anyway; and all those assorted gold earrings that have been sad singletons since their mates went missing.

This type of gold jewelry is only worth its weight in gold and so it is perfect for the scrap heap. The only thing that matters when you sell gold jewelry for scrap is the quality and the quantity of gold in the item. All the gold buyer wants from your miscellaneous jewelry is to melt it down and recover its precious metal.

And when selling gold, it is not only jewelry you should consider. Have any gold dental crowns or dental bridgework? Any bits of gold you got from panning? A plain wedding band that from your hated ex spouse? These can all get scrapped too – turning junk taking up space into cash in your pocket.

Selling Gold Jewelry – The Basics

What a buyer is willing to pay you for your gold jewelry is determined by the following factors:

*the karat of the metal

*the weight of the piece

*the price of gold the day you are selling

*the refining or assaying fee

*the buyer’s profit margin

The price of gold, which this week was up to $1,150 an ounce, refers to the price being offered on pure 24 karat gold.

Other karats of gold will bring in less because because the percentage of gold is lower, and that is all the buyer is after. For your reference, 22 karat is 91.7% gold, 18 karat is 75% gold, 14 karat is 58.3% gold and 10 karat is 41.7% gold.

Multiply these by the weight of the piece and you have a base figure. Then come the deductions.

A small bit of gold is always lost in the process of melting down, not to mention the cost involved to do it, so these are taken off the value of your pieces.

The last deduction is the profit the buyer wants to make on the deal, and it is this part of the calculation that can lead to wildly varying offers when one buyer is OK with a 15% profit margin and another wants nothing less than 40%.

When it is all said and done, your various bits of gold jewelry probably won’t add up to that much relative to what the items cost retail, but hundreds and even thousands of dollars can be made.